Reference 5013 was launched in 1992 and is one of the most complex wristwatches ever made by Patek Philippe, with a total of 515 parts. To celebrate the company's 150th Anniversary in 1989, the firm produced a minute repeating wristwatch, the first to feature an automatic calibre. This innovation led to the development of the Reference 5013, the first minute-repeating wristwatch to feature an automatic movement combined with perpetual calendar with retrograde date indication. The retrograde date hand moves along a 270 degree arc and at midnight of the last day of each month, it flies back to the first of the month. During this precisely controlled fly-back phase, the hand is disconnected from the drive train and is cleverly captured back on the 1st of the month to ensure it does not slip forward by a day.
The case of the Reference 5013 pays homage to one of the most important watches sold in recent auction history: no. 97589, the tonneau-form minute repeating wristwatch in yellow gold, made for Henry Graves, Jr. Sold by Sotheby's New York in June 2012 for nearly three million US dollars. Another well-known example, no. 198.212, made in a platinum tortue case for Henry Graves, Jr., is illustrated in Huber, M. & Banbery, A., Patek Philippe Wristwatches, Second Edition, p.315, pl. 470a-d. This watch is exhibited in the Patek Philippe Museum.
The production of Ref. 5013 ceased in 2011. When the present model was created, the platinum version of Ref. 5013 was available only with a silvered dial, as noted on the Certificate of Origin. In 2006, a black dial was made available for platinum examples, and at that point the owner requested this option as well. According to our research, only three examples of Ref. 5013 in platinum have been offered at auction complete with two dials, inclusive of the present lot.
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